Daily Miles: 15
Total Miles: 1693
We had a very relaxing day off yesterday in Grants. We never really walked more than a quarter mile from our motel, which is great with us. We prefer to just hang out in our room, either getting some work done or watching Netflix. We did both. Beardoh had calls with his mom, our business partner, and our good friend Qball.
This morning we decided not to rush back out on the trail. We slept in a bit and even got to talk with MountainMan and Ace for a bit. It is always fun to talk with them and to catch up on their hiking adventure. Their experience through the same landscape and trail has been different in a couple ways; climate as well as battling the destruction of the high winds on the Divide right after Labor Day.
We finally got on the trail just after 10:30am. We weren’t really looking forward to this next section, because we will be walking almost exclusively on paved roads to get to our next town of Pie Town. And to make things even worse, there is only two sources of water during the three day stretch, so we will have very long water carries. Ugh.
We spent the day walking on a state highway. There was more traffic than we had hoped and there was no shoulder on the road. Double ugh. At least we figured we could count on all the drivers being able to see us due to SweetPea’s new and very bright pink shirt.
It was pretty warm all day and we were exposed to the sun as we walked on the road. At least we were able to find a few nice shady spots for breaks…most notably, a cool shelf in the sandstone which funneled a cold breeze and we actually got goosebumps!
One peculiarity that we have never experienced in a hike is a horde of bees. Of course, getting a bee sting in the woods is not uncommon, and we experienced that. Today, however, a swarm of bees game whizzing at us right on the road. Luckily they came and went quickly, and we were not stung, but it woke us up from our road walking daze quickly.
Tonight we are sleeping at a trailhead. One difficulty in walking the roads is locating a place where we can camp. The land on either side of the road is fenced off. Sometimes it is private, so we avoid it, but sometimes it is US government land which we can use. It is usually very hard to know which it is. Often we can see the private land owners with a special map layer on our navigation app, but for some reason it doesn’t show any information for the area we will be walking through tomorrow. We knew that we would be able to sleep at the trailhead tonight, but our sleeping location for tomorrow remains a mystery. We’ll just have to wait and see.